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“The joke’s on you, elves! I took it from a guy I met on the street who tried to enroll me in trucking school.”

Ok, here’s how I set the trap for those elves. The official public position is that they “drowned in milk” but really they were just too embarrassed to show their faces again after the whole laundry thing went down.

See, I was at the laundromat this one day and I was folding some shirts, until the guy with the shirts said “Hey, don’t fold those, I was gonna wash them.” Sensing he was a hobo, I backed away until I bumped into two small men wearing green and white striped socks. They seemed to be arguing. One was saying “This isn’t going to help with the cookies” and the other was yelling “I’m telling you, E.L. is going to promote us for this!”

So I picked one of ’em up by the neck and said “What’s the problem sonny, got ring around the collar?” And he sprayed me with one of those flowers that squirts water at you and said “This is where the hurt begins, mister.” So just as we get nose-to-nose and we’re about to start duking it out, you know, the other guy steals my coat and throws it in the washing machine! And he’s pouring bleach in there, and hitting the button for the longer spin cycle, and all the while he’s going “The cookies can’t be stopped! The cookies can’t be stopped!”

“Aha!” I said, laughing. “Ahahahahahahahahahaha!” Then they started laughing too. “Shut up!” I said. “The joke’s on you, elves! That’s not even my coat! I took it from a guy I met on the street who tried to enroll me in trucking school, only I took the patch that said ‘Larry’ off and replaced it with an Abstract Impressionist painting of a caulking gun! You lose!” And that was the trick, because elves don’t know what caulking guns are. They never use them. They use frosting to patch their bathrooms, and so the kids with big appetites won’t come out of the bathroom at night. It’s one of their big social problems. I asked the guy in the office next to mine if he knew what would happen if somebody brought a caulking gun to an elf’s house, and he said “I’m going to the Dean, I can’t take this anymore.” Which was pretty good.

So the coat came out of the wash all wet, which was weird, so I had to put it in the dryer. But the elves wouldn’t pay for it! I don’t carry around quarters because – well, what’s the point – so I had to wash dishes to pay for the drying. But I’d beaten the elves at their own game. I don’t think I’ll see them or their stripey socks at the laundromat anytime soon.

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